Skip to main content

Full text of "Poland Russia and Great Britain 1941-1945"

See other formats


even then engaged in exterminating the Polish Underground and the
Home Army, stamping them in Poland as an' English faction ' and in their
foreign propaganda as " German agents and spies."
After the silent unattended burial of the Baltic States., it was Poland
who became the main objective of this diplomatic duel between Russia
and Britain. The heavy losses sustained by the latter's prestige can be
measured by the status of the Polish Government from July 30, 1941.
At that time Moscow had no doubts as to the legality of the Polish Govern-
ment, and dared not publicly claim Polish territory ; Maisky, when signing
the Treaty with Poland, had, at his boldest., only said that " settlement
of the frontiers will be carried out after the war." In direct contrast,
was its status in the summer of 1944, when a victorious Moscow forbade
this same Government's return to that part of Poland which had now been
' liberated ' by the Red Army, and installed its own puppet instead.
The most important asset of the Polish Government was its unques-
tionable constitutional legality, and the backing given to it by the Under-
ground State and people. Moscicki, the President of the Polish Republic
in 1939, having been interned with his Government in Rumania, trans-
ferred his rights to Raczkiewicz. The existing Cabinet resigned and the
President called upon Sikorski in Paris to create a new one. Sikorski
had been in close touch with France for some years and it was anticipated
that he would be the right man to smooth over difficulties in connection
with the French authorities. This change-over in the Polish Govern-
ment was carried out in accordance with the Constitution of Poland, and
there never was, either among the Polish political parties, or among the
other Powers, any question of doubt as to its legality. Even Moscow
had recognised this fully by signing a treaty with that Government in
1941, Now, aiming at its destruction, the Soviets were questioning the
legality of the foundations of the Polish Government.
Using the pretext that this Government was based on the Constitutional
Law of 19355 which was supposed to be c Fascists and so on, they (the
Soviets) were now stating that a rightful Polish Government could be
formed only under the Constitution of 1921.   To pacify Moscow, the
British Foreign Office was prepared to recognise the former's claim to
that half of Poland already occupied by the Red Army, and was prepared
to go even further and further in their gradual capitulation towards the
Kremlui and its plan to limit the independence and sovereignty of the
remainder of Poland.   In 1939, the method of appeasement at the cost of
a weaker Ally had reached its climax in the demarche of the British and
French Ambassadors when, only a day prior to the German invasion of
Poland, they had requested the Polish Government to recall the order
for general mobilisation.   The same policy in 1944 led to the Polish
Premier being sent to Moscow uninvited, and afterwards to the removal
of the Polish Commander-in-Chief General Sosnkowski from office,
306